As stated by GQ:
If you’re not a ballet dancer, then no.
If you’re not a pro/athlete and making it look good, then no.
If you’re not a superhero, then no.
If you’re not Peter Pan, then no.
If you’re not David Bowie in Labyrinth, then no.
If it’s not laundry day and your borrowing your girlfriend’s leggings, then no.
If you’re not trying to get beat up, then no.
If you’re not trying to show how small your penis is (stop laughing), then no.
If you’re trying to show how big your penis is (stop laughing), definitely no.
If you’re not a male street walker, then no.
If you’re trying to make the world doubt the future of mankind, then yes, go ahead.
By Kiara Walker
Founder of the Gallery of Fashion Art
Dries Van Noten
Dries Van Noten has an incredible knack for creating consistently comfortable glamour, and his Spring RTW 2013 collection was no exception. Van Noten’s grunge-inspired plaid prints may pay some homage to the good ol’ early 1990s rocker days, but the term “hard-edged” certainly does not describe his approach to fabrics. Integrating delicate organza, comfortable crepe, and lustrous taffeta, along with a variety of floral prints and simulated “floral” treatments, Van Noten creates a beautiful dance of masculinity and femininity—more than a playful dance really, but rather, a harmonious marriage of softness and hardness. While the late Kurt Cobain might trigger images of dark, sullen garage bands and angst-ridden, emotionally overcharged teens, Dries Van Noten’s ambiguous mixture of prints and texture is neither irreverently grotesque nor a tired cliché. His ever-refreshing, effortlessly “cool” collection exudes a casual elegance, making us constantly redefine what constitutes the term “elegant.”
Louis Vuitton’s “needs-no-introductions” creative director, Marc Jacobs, clearly sees nothing wrong, old, or hindering about looking towards the past in order to re-discover something new. Jacobs’ Spring 2013 RTW collection for Louis Vuitton is a perfect example of taking little bits and pieces of history–such iconic images and ideas (in this case, the ever popular Pop Art movement)–that we have seen over and over again—and really dissecting, analyzing, and reconstructing it to create something groundbreaking—er, well, in this case, rejuvenating, uplifting, experimental, and revived. Jacobs definitely delivered a breath of fresh air, showing a variety of flattering lengths and expanding but not exhausting the limits of the “checkerboard” through color, cut, and transparency. His end result was a whimsical, daring, and playful presentation of visual excitement, youthful spirit, and modern elegance.
Skin was definitely “in” this season at Balenciaga. Yet, for Nicolas Ghesquière, skin wasn’t about the stereotypical, scantily clad and outrageously tight party dress, nor the plunging, sheer JLO sarong, or even the ultra femme fatale-Sharon Stone-red carpet slit. No, Balenciaga’s collection bore a futuristic artistry (most noted to Ghesquière) that is graphic and severe, yet investigative and purposeful. In particular, his boxy white midriff top, worn by Liya Kebede, paired with a dramatic black and white skirt with oversized ruffles almost harks back to the structural, yet streamlined elegance of vintage Cristobal, with its exploration of shape and linearity. A string of Ghesquière’s suits and tailored looks, which consist of either a cropped or “bra-like” top, again achieve an unadorned, streamlined appeal, but are strong and confident due to their contradictory pairing. He maintains his Ghesquière rawness, but with a finesse that is visually sharp and a courage of conviction that is noticeable throughout. His curious amalgam of replicated tweeds incorporated through crop tops and mini skirt-jacket “twinsets,” is in fact, ambiguous—on a good level, upholding a worthy promise of innovation. Towards the latter half of the show, his artistic flavor and bold graphicness extends exceedingly so into a more delicate and technically intricate arrangement of geometric patterns.
Despite delving into an undeniably darker palette, Haider Ackermann did not necessarily plunge into the pits of despair—rather, his black, chocolate brown, white, and navy color story felt ultra luxurious, rich–in more ways than one–and inspiring. The thick, graphic black belt (bordering on the edge of a harness) proved to be a dominant feature throughout the collection, pulling together several looks that featured a beautiful mix of both structural and slinky stripes, polka dots, and geometric prints. One could say that the color scheme actually helped to achieve this understated elegance. Even his all-black pieces—effortless in movement—commanded attention, showing the range of what his collection had to offer. Though quite the majority layered, Ackermann’s looks, particularly his outerwear, are organically fluid and exquisitely draped, adding to the power and luxury of the clothes. Haider Ackermann’s collection overall maintained an admirable balance of strength and grace.
By Kiara Walker
I thought writing this review would be easy. I thought I would have so many great collections to choose from that I would end up having to expand my “#NYFW Top 10″ list. Nope, that’s not what happened. In fact, I was disappointed by some of the collections shown at NYFW, but, as I discussed with my friend @anika_gupta on twitter perhaps that’s because I expected too much. Perhaps I expected London or Paris Fashion Week instead. Luckily, they’re soon to come and London Fashion Week has begun.
Why are you being so harsh? Tell me!!
Harsh? Hardly. Critical? Yes. There were many highlights of the NYFW season, of course, but overall I felt rather underwhelmed. Will these clothes sell? Of course! Because the fashion monster is already on a roll and it can’t really stop. No, not even when some of the silhouettes aren’t that fresh or the colors are kinda stale or that the clothes look like they’ve aready been marked at half price. They must sell and we must buy. That is the fashion gospel truth.
Nevertheless, I decided to change my list from the optimistic “Top 10″ to the “I Don’t Know Anymore: List of #NYFW Shows”
Alexander Wang was fun to look at. I imagined wearing his clothing in a sexy sci-fi lounge on another planet or strutting down a dimly lit brig on a spaceship. I like to think that Princess Leia, in the modern world, would be sufficiently satisfied with this collection (and she would probably add a coat/jacket to be more presentable considering her political position).
No but seriously(Hey, I was serious!)…
The A.Wang brand took advantage simple ideas/basic concepts and made them refreshing. The use of negative space to expose and create new shapes; not only in the pattern pieces cut, but also in the criss-crossing of the netting and knit used. He also used the negative space to outline shapes that we often take for granted, like the angles of a lapel or the shape of a pocket. Even the shoes were stunning, a sexy blend between gladiator and strappy sandal. Alexander Wang has never been one to blast color on the runway, but with the design of the garments, one almost never notices the consistent trail of black, white, gray and silver, especially when it’s so easy to match with what’s already in one’s closet.
2. FELT LET DOWN
I just knew that the Calvin Klein Collection would hit the fashion spot that the other designers missed. But I couldn’t find the chic and sleek minimalism that had made it so delicious. Many details felt haphazard (Why is that there?) and too basic. And by “too basic” I mean that Calvin Klein Collection has never been predictable in terms of design detail and I found this rather unsettling. Some garments didn’t “fit” properly, I mean they were awkward, the “new” shapes weren’t gutsy enough, and I’m not sure if the Mickey Mouse ear shapes did the collection justice. I don’t mean to say that the collection was sloppy, of course not. I just didn’t feel the love connection that CKC usually gave me and so, I was left unfulfilled and hope to fulfill my lust for fashion elsewhere. (Gosh I hope my designer friends at CKC never see this…)
Donna Karan’s Spring 2013 collection was sexy! And minimal enough to be placed in a variety of fashion taste categories. I loved this collection because it looks very easy to wear (perfect for Spring) and it looks like a tabula rasa for experimentation with accessories; no necklace, ring or earrings is too chunky or small for these looks! The color palette was not exaggerated and its quietness perfectly matched the discreet details. Feminine indeed, but many of the garments allowed just enough space for black leather and metal spikes (use with caution), and added sex-generic garments for the perfect balance of androgyny.
4. IDK ANYMORE:
The Marc Jacobs collection was one I feel that you either liked or didn’t like. At times I felt the collections were brilliant (like the gradient graph coat and skirt look, and the varied stripe floor length dress) but often times, while observing the show, I had some doubts. The flounce didn’t work on every garment and made some fine garments look rather unnecessarily comical. Not that clothing can’t be whimsical…I didn’t like all of the wide stripe jersey dresses and didn’t think they all worked (the neutral one was cute), but I loved the varigated stripe dresses toward the end. Still, I enjoyed the fun factor!
(Above) “Love this…”
Here goes another tabula rasa collection: Tess Giberson. What do you think? It’s rather wearable and many of the looks would look great on a variety of body types. I like this collection because of the details. Yes, many of the looks were all white, but the white was off-set (in a positive way) by the variety of textures used, including: knits, leather, and sequins. The proportions were perfect and with the use of the ties, the wearer could easily adjust fit and lengths. A rather edgy but still feminine collection…but you’re still not convinced? Maybe you don’t like all the white…still this collection can easily be matched with colored garments. Or you can dye the garments in the bathtub like I’m doing right now (multi-tasking…) *cue dramatic gasp* “Never!”
(below) A layered look
I appreciate Thakoon’s collection for the graphic prints and delicate hint of next season’s colors. And then, in addition, the mix of prints and fabrics; not everyone can mix a flower print and an eyelet fabric without creating a dowdy look. Throughout his collection, he was dedicated to his romantic theme of florals, birds and their cages by using prints, colors, and silhoutte shapes (some voluminous and others slim).
7. I GUESS…
I would just like to say that I liked the red leather looks in Proenza’s collection. I also liked the angles and the swirls created through the seaming details. I like it when my eyes observe a look from top to bottom instead of getting lost in the middle and not being able to appreciate the whole garment. I liked that the boys at Proenza Schouler kept the edge their brand is known for, and even though the collection itself didn’t excite me as much as their other spring collections, some of the details did. @anika_gupta thought that their collection looked too much like their Resort collection. What do you think?
8. FELT LET DOWN:
I would like to cheat on #8 and include two designers in the same category.
Michael Kors…I thought for a second I was at a Tommy Hilfiger show, which shocked me because Michael Kors was maintaining such an “affordable chic” streak that I just had to jump on the Michael Kors fanatic train. But I guess this is my stop because I did not feel inspired as I kept making transfers between Lacoste and Tommy Hilfiger, when I should have felt and known (in my heart *tear*) that I was on the MK train. It didn’t have the edge his other collections have. However, it’s not like designers can’t take a different direction…I feel like you don’t understand what I’m saying…stop judging me!
(Above) The styling still feels like MK
(below) MK was more present in the later looks like the one below
(below) Rodarte…started well, but honestly, I just don’t know what to think.
(below) “Ok I feel you…this is going to be good…”
and then..”Um, okay this is interesting…”
“Ok you lost me…”
Hey, I know some of us can pull each of these off. I know I could. But do they all belong in the same collection? What is the connection style wise? Theme wise?
Alice + Olivia produced a fun collection to our relief that, though still made up of the basic silhouettes, offered enough imagination for us ladies to think “hey, that’s cute”. I think I will indulge myself with this collection just because the garments are fun and free-feeling, but at the same time, poised and chic.
*cue the aws* “Awwwww”
10. I WANTED MORE
Narciso Rodriguez’s collection was as precise as it was direct and minimal. I liked the collection as a whole. The way he tapped into the 90s and added the floral sequins/beading on tops to add texture to otherwise flat color. It’s wonderful because from far away, it looks like a velvet burnout. Cool! Still, I think, I would have liked to see these details and treatment repeated more. Can you imagine a full length, beaded dress? Or perhaps a print that looks just like the beading…
Well, these are my thoughts, but I’d like to hear what you think!
Written to the album “The ArchAndroid” by Janelle Monae
twitter: Walkek35 and WindsorSparrow
View the Gallery of Fashion Art at http://www.galleryoffashionart.com and on facebook at: facebook.com/galleryoffashionart.
I’m actually attempting to start going to bed a lot earlier in 2012 in order to preserve my sanity and have more time to create in the day, but I can’t help but get caught up creating & browsing the Web well after midnight. I’ve got some really cool blogs I enjoy reading, and I’m always finding some cool new music or comedy on YouTube.
Right now I’m trying to get ready to go to bed, but I’m procrastinating. Ah, I know, I know. I totally should just shut off my Macbook and go to sleep, but I’m waiting for my Sleepytime tea to cool down. Usually I’d sip on Nighty Night Tea (yeah, it’s actually called that) but I’m laying on my bed right now laughing at the latest episodes of Shit Girls Say. Not too long ago I did a post on the first episode, which you can read by clicking here.
But they came out with two more episodes, and I just found out about them. People have done some spin offs like Shit Black Girls Say & Shit Black Guys Say, and they were hilarious! As a Black girl, I can really relate to those ones as well. But then of course you’ve got a lot of people out there who were offended by the portrayal, but dude get over it. It’s just a joke. It’s humorous. People try to act all proper & socially/politically correct, but sometimes you’ve got to just chill out and take a good laugh. I mean as a Black woman I wasn’t offended because we say some priceless stuff. Out of all the videos I can honestly say I really relate to the Shit Black Girls Say, and since I hang out with mainly Black guys, I can say that the video for Shit Black Guys say is on point! I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve heard a Black dude say some of the lines in that video. LOL, too funny!
All the videos are hilarious, but apparently the original Shit Girls Say has much more content to work with so I’m sure these videos will keep rolling in within the next few weeks. But maybe there will be another installment in the Shit Black Guys/Girls Say videos. But for now enjoy the hilarious tweets by @shitgirlssay & watch episode 2 and 3 (well that one totally sucked, so I’m not posting it.) It just wasn’t as funny as the 1st and 2nd episode. They should just stick to the quick cuts and phrases, not one long drawn out conversation that is lame. But let me stop ranting and critiquing it. If you’re a female, then most likely you can relate to Shit Girls Say. It’s hilarious, witty, & oh so true. Every time I watch the episodes I’m like “OMFG, I totally say that!”
©Jasmine McGee.ThinkSoul25. http://thinksoul25.com